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Hyleigh Wilson shows winning Dice at fair

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BEST OVERALL: Hyleigh Wilson holds Dice and the banner the pair won for Dice being named the Best Overall Feline in the 2018 Cat Show at the Clinton County & 4-H Fair Sunday. Hyleigh and Dice also tooGrand Champion honors in the Senior Cat category.
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WINNING DICE: Hyleigh Wilson holds her cat Dice who won Best Feline overall and Grand Champion in the Senior Cat category at the Clinton County & 4-H Fair Sunday.
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KITTY CASINO: MadiHoward of Cyclone waits with her cat Butterscotch at the Cat Show at the Clinton County & 4-H Fair Sunday. Howard was participating in her first show with Butterscotch.

BY SHARON BARDONNER - sbardonner@ftimes.com

Hyleigh Wilson and her 10-year-old cat Dice took Grand Champion honors in the Senior Cat category and overall Best Feline in the Cat Show Sunday at the Clinton County Fairgrounds. 

This was Hyleigh’s second year in the Cat Show, and she said she had put in a lot of work to get Dice and the cat’s “Kitty Pool” ready for competition.

According to Susan Rhine who led the Cat Show, 18 contestants were entered but one cat was pulled out before the show due to an injury. About a dozen cats competed in the three categories based on the animal’s age.

Madi Howard, of Cyclone, was competing for the first time with her cat Butterscotch, 4. She had transformed her cage into the “Kitty Casino,” where Butterscotch waited patiently for the show to begin.

“I really like cats, and since I have a cat, I thought I could show my cat,” said Madi. “I think she’s pretty.”

Madi’s granmother, Teresa Jaycott, commented that Madi was very proud of Butterscotch and an enthusiastic animal lover generally.

Madi admitted to being nervous to compete in her first show but appeared confident as she carried Butterscotch to the front for judging.

The cats’ cages were decorated in different themes, ranging from Purdue and tropical themes to Dice’s “Kitty Pool” and the “Catalouge” cage next door.

Inside the Catalouge was 11-month-old Sylvester, shown by Hyleigh’s sister Haven, who won a Grand Champion ribbon and plaque.

About 75 fans sat in the bleachers in the Livestock Show Arena and watched as Judge Windy Johnston called each owner to bring his or her cat to the table to be examined. Johnston said she has shown cats herself on the Cat Show circuit and also showed several years for 4-H.

The cats are judged on their body weight and structure, and Johnston also checked their health by looking into their ears and eyes and assessed their grooming, including whether their claws had been clipped. Some of the contestants were advised to be sure to clean their cat’s ears before every contest, a tip Johnston shared when providing the audience with an overview of the criteria after the judging.

Other winners included Neven Chasteen, Reserve Grand Champion, for Luna; Bailey Barnes, Reserve Grand Champion, for Callie; Caden Crum, Champion, for Tommy.